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January 18, 2020

Resilience Redefined: 36th Annual WateReuse Symposium Presents Live and On-Demand Roundtables to Keep Your Informed – Register Today!

Washington Update

WateReuse Submits Comments on EPA Draft Guidance for Functional Equivalent Discharge Test

National Water Reuse Action Plan Engagement Opportunity

President-Elect Biden Releases Stimulus Proposal

Last week, President-Elect Biden released his proposal for the next economic stimulus package, asking Congress to provide $1.9 trillion in COVID relief. Biden has also said that he intends to release a second proposal in the coming weeks aimed at advancing longer term recovery goals. Last week’s proposal includes $350 billion in aid to states and localities and $30 billion to help low-income households pay rent and utility bills. The package would also include billions of dollars in assistance to small businesses. Congress will aim to pass a stimulus package sometime in the early spring before certain relief benefits expire.

EPA Invites Water Reuse Projects to Apply for WIFIA Loans

State Updates and Member Profiles

Welcome New Member!

The WateReuse Association welcomes the following new member:

Section Update: Pacific Northwest Highlights New Water Reuse Initiatives and Workshops

The WateReuse Pacific Northwest quarterly newsletter was released last week with a welcome from new Section President Nick Smith of Stantec and an announcement of a new workshop series on advancing water reuse through state focused partnerships. The newsletter also spotlights the opening of St. Michael Medical Center in Silverdale, Washington, which will use Class A recycled water for non-potable uses on campus. Read more.

Alabama: Onsite Water Recycling Provides Hope in Rural America

Researchers at Columbia University are partnering with the MacArthur Foundation’s Catherine Coleman Flowers in Lowndes County, Alabama to address the community’s untreated sewage problem. The project aims to design a toilet that will filter, clean, and recycle waste onsite and then use the water in washing machines and nutrients for fertilizer. Many households in this rural community are unable to afford septic systems, and those that do are faced with challenging soil conditions not apt for those systems. Columbia’s new Wastewater Innovation and Environmental Justice Lab works to find better and greener ways of managing waste through innovative sanitation policy and rural activism. Read more.

California: Federal Funding to Expand Desalination Capacity

The Eastern Municipal Water District (EMWD) has received a $25 million authorization to support its desalination program through the recently passed Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) that was signed into law in late December 2020. The funding will be authorized over several years to fund additional water supply wells, pipelines, and a new brine minimization technology that will increase local water supply availability and further reduce EMWD’s dependence on imported water supplies. The current desalination process produces 75 gallons of fresh drinking water out of every 100 gallons of salty groundwater. The federal funds, delivered through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, supports new technology that will bring that recovery rate to more than 90 percent. Read more.

Florida: Reclaimed Water Helps Hillsborough County Earn LEED Platinum Certification

Hillsborough County has become the first county government in Florida to achieve Platinum LEED for Cities and Communities certification from the U.S Green Building Council thanks in part to its reclaimed water program. The Cities and Communities certification goes well beyond one building; it requires the integration of sustainability efforts across the community. Hillsborough’s rigorous five year application process included demonstrating efforts such as their leadership on reclaimed water production and high water quality achievements. Read more.

Member Spotlight: Fish and Wildlife Highlights Eastern Municipal’s Wetlands Reuse Initiative

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is showcasing the natural beauty and flourishing wildlife in the first state wildlife area to be enhanced with recycled water. The San Jacinto Wildlife Area boasts 900 acres of restored wetlands from recycled water in Riverside County, CA. Eastern Municipal Water District uses the constructed wetlands to “polish” recycled water before it is distributed to farms, dairies, and the wildlife area. Read more.

Research Update

Breakthrough in Desalination Membrane Density Could Lead to Cheaper Water

Researchers with the University of Texas at Austin, Penn State, and DuPont Water Solutions discovered a large variation in desalination membrane density at the nanoscale. The researchers hypothesized that density at the nanoscale is the key to increasing how much clean water these membranes can create. In recently published findings, the researchers were able to demonstrate a 30-40% increase in efficiency with more uniform density at the nanoscale. Read more.

New Climate Model Incorporates Urban Climates

A team of climate scientists have developed a new climate model specific to urban climates that could aid communities in projecting future water recycling needs. The model aims to close the urban-global information gap in climate modelling to support more effective urban planning for climate-driven risks. The model generates city-level projections of temperatures and relative humidity through the year 2100. Initial projections of city humidity indicate urban vegetation could be a strong adaptive measure, illustrating one way city planners could use the tool. Read more.

International Update

Italian Greenhouse to Provide Crops Year-Round with Recycled Water

Italian company, Fellini Patrizio, announced plans to grow local grow crops throughout the winter months, using a solar powered greenhouse equipped with a water recycling system that will reuse up to of 90% of washing water. Over the next year, the company will test a variety of crops focusing on balancing crop protection with minimizing the input of energy, fertilization, plant protection, and water use.  Read more.

Member Resources and Benefits

Profiles in Reuse: Flyer Explains Safety and Reliability of Potable Reuse

Use our flyer, Profiles in Reuse: Potable Reuse, to inform ratepayers, elected officials, and other stakeholders about the safety and reliability of using purified water as part of the drinking water supply. The flyer also supports WateReuse’s Medical Community Initiative, which seeks to build support for potable reuse among medical and public health officials. This flyer is the first in a series of Profiles in Reuse that will serve as resources for member communication on water recyclingDownload Flyer.

Conferences, Webcasts and Events

Webcast: Water Reuse Policy in the 117th Congress and Biden Administration

January 27, 2021
11 am PT | 2 pm ET

Please join us for a webcast with Washington insiders to examine what’s on the congressional agenda for 2021 and what water-related priorities the Biden Administration is likely to push in its first year. Register here.

Webcast: Stormwater Capture Drivers, Impediments, and Future Visions

February 3, 2021
11 am PT | 2 pm ET

Join a group of stormwater management leaders from around the US to discuss stormwater capture motivations and drivers, barriers to progress, and future directions. The audience will learn about opportunities to market and advance stormwater capture. Register here.

Webcast: Communicating about Potable Reuse and Public Health –Tools for Success

February 17, 2021
11 am PT | 2 pm ET

This webcast will describe methods to communicate with stakeholders – including healthcare providers – regarding the human health safeguards associated with potable reuse implementation. Register here.

Upcoming Events

May
15
Sun
Florida WateReuse Week
May 15 – May 21 all-day
May
17
Tue
Pacific Northwest Section Meeting
May 17 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
May
18
Wed
Direct Potable Reuse in the Four Corners
May 18 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Direct Potable Reuse in the Four Corners

11 am PT | 2 pm ET (1 hour)
WateReuse Members: Free; Others: $49
PDHs: 1

Register Now!

The Four Corners region includes the arid western states of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. These four states have several common challenges to providing reliable water supplies including: rapid population growth, severe long term drought conditions, and dwindling or overallocated natural water sources. Indirect potable reuse is currently being practiced in these states, often through managed groundwater replenishment or incidental means. Is engineered potable reuse the next step to building safe, reliable, and resilient water resource portfolios?

While water utilities in the Four Corners states are taking steps toward direct potable reuse (DPR), each of these states face different implementation challenges. This panel discussion delves into the progress and issues regarding DPR in the region.

Speakers:

  • Brian Biesemeyer CITY OF SCOTTSDALE, AZ
  • Robert Fowlie REPRESENTING THE VILLAGE OF CLOUDCROFT, NM
  • Steve Gallegos CITY OF RIO RANCHO, NM
  • Raymond Garrison CITY OF SOUTH JORDAN, UT
  • Tyson Ingles CO DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENT
  • Sarah Page UTAH DIVISION OF DRINKING WATER
  • Austa Parker BROWN AND CALDWELL
  • Javier Setovich CITY OF GOODYEAR, AZ
  • Katie Vanyo BROWN AND CALDWELL
  • Matt Benak, TOWN OF CASTLE ROCK, CO
May
20
Fri
Florida Water Reuse Week: The Role of Education and Outreach in Florida’s Growing Reuse Landscape
May 20 @ 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Florida Water Reuse Week: The Role of Education and Outreach in Florida’s Growing Reuse Landscape

11 am ET | 8 am PT (1 hour)
WateReuse Members and Florida Water Reuse Week Registrants: Free; Others: $49
Registrants for Florida Water Reuse Week will receive a discount code for free webcast registration
PDHs: 1

Register Now!

Florida reuses 34 percent of its wastewater compared to the national average of about 7 percent. A recent statewide survey showed that 75 percent of Floridians are familiar with the concept of using reclaimed water for irrigation, industrial uses, and other non-drinking purposes. However, as the state is undergoing record-setting growth and rulemaking for direct potable reuse, additional education and outreach is needed to gain public acceptance. Water professionals and utilities from across the state are working collaboratively through WateReuse Florida to develop and implement consistent messaging on how reuse will safely supply Florida’s future. As Florida celebrates Water Reuse Week May 15-21, join us to hear about the latest education and outreach efforts happening to support traditional and potable reuse at the local and state level.

  • Robyn Felix, Communications & Board Services Bureau Chief, Southwest Florida Water Management District
  • Tamara Richardson, P.E., Director of Polk County Utilities
  • Shea Dunifon, Education Coordinator, Pinellas County Utilities, Florida

WateReuse California Legislative/Regulators Committee Meeting @ TBD
May 20 @ 12:30 pm – 2:00 pm
Jun
8
Wed
WRSD Quarter 2 Chapter Meeting @ TBD
Jun 8 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Jun
10
Fri
Meeting of the Board of Directors – Second Quarter 2022 @ Virtual
Jun 10 @ 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

Second Quarter:
Remote
Friday, June 10, 2022: 11:00 am to 2:00 pm EST

WateReuse California Legislative/Regulators Committee Meeting @ TBD
Jun 10 @ 12:30 pm – 2:00 pm
Jun
14
Tue
Los Angeles Chapter Meeting
Jun 14 all-day
Jun
16
Thu
Orange County Chapter Meeting
Jun 16 @ 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm

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WateReuse is the only trade association that focuses solely on advancing laws, policy and funding to increase water reuse. Our niche strategy sets us apart from other organizations in the water industry.

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